As the taxpayer-footed price tag of Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price’s private travel balloons to over $1 million, he’s probably wishing that he could take back some of his harsh statements about “reckless” government spending right about now.
On Sept. 21, Politico reported that Price took private charter planes when inexpensive commercial options were available. These private flights reportedly ended up costing the public more than $300,000.
But that was just the tip of the iceberg. On Thursday, after learning that Price also frequently took military jets for travel abroad, Politico adjusted the cost to taxpayers to over $1 million.
Price has vowed to pay back the government for the cost of his seats on the planes. But his promise of $52,000 doesn’t quite stand up to the total “price” tag. Heh.
The massive bill is especially galling considering his past statements about government spending. While in Congress, Secretary Price was a harsh and outspoken critic of bloated budgets. He frequently berated Democrats for spending during a time of deficit, and for mishandling money.
Fortunately for us, the internet never forgets. And these self-righteous tweets about “reckless spending” are definitely not a good look.
POTUS says Obamacare has nothing to do w/ debt. He should read the bill to find out what’s in it. HINT: lots of spending & econ pain
— Tom Price (@RepTomPrice) September 27, 2013
Governing is just so gosh-darn difficult for Democrats when the public demands a halt to reckless spending and trillion dollar deficits.
— Tom Price (@RepTomPrice) May 17, 2010
Jobs report shows econ still weakened by those who insist on defending a broken status quo, more spending & failing Washington policies
— Tom Price (@RepTomPrice) October 22, 2013
Washington has grown fat on bloated, wasteful spending for far too long. http://tiny.cc/vrchs
— Tom Price (@RepTomPrice) May 20, 2010
Americans are tired of Washington wasting their hard-earned tax dollars on wish list items at a time when our budget is nearing a crisis.
— Tom Price (@RepTomPrice) December 13, 2010
Ready for some icing on the hypocrisy cake? Here’s a video of Tom Price criticizing Democrats in Congress for – wait for it – spending money on private planes for government travel.
“This is just another example of fiscal irresponsibility run amok in congress,” said then-Congressman Price on CNBC.
His termination as HHS secretary may indeed be justified – especially if Trump decides to take Price’s own advice:
If you can’t budget, you can’t govern.
— Tom Price (@RepTomPrice) June 14, 2010
Can’t argue with that.
UPDATE Sept. 29, 1:40 p.m. PT: Secretary Tom Price resigned Friday, the White House announced. Deputy assistant secretary Don Wright was tapped as acting secretary.
Later Friday, Price posted his resignation letter, which the White House also shared.